Feminism is for everybody

Elsevier, The Lancet, Volume 393, 9 - 15 February 2019
The Lancet

Feminism is a social movement that promotes gender equality and social justice for all individuals, regardless of gender identification. Feminism is not only for women, contrary to common opinion; it is for everyone.

Feminism attempts to remove the social, political, and economic structures that perpetuate gender inequity and restrict people's potential, regardless of gender. Feminism may assist in achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and build a more fair and equitable society by promoting gender equality and empowering women and girls.

Intersectionality is a crucial idea of feminism, which recognises the interdependence of multiple types of oppression such as racism, ableism, homophobia, and transphobia. Intersectional feminism acknowledges that people encounter numerous types of discrimination and oppression and attempts to solve these overlapping concerns in order to build more inclusive and equitable communities. We can ensure that everyone's experiences and opinions are respected and accounted for by taking an intersectional approach to feminism.

We at SDG Resources are dedicated to promoting gender equality and feminist causes. We provide a variety of feminism-related articles and materials, including its history, ideals, and influence on reaching the SDGs. We urge you to explore our material and join us in the battle for gender equality and social justice for everyone, whether you are new to feminism or a seasoned campaigner.

The statement made by bell hooks in 1981 that to be a feminist is to seek liberation from sexist role patterns, domination, and oppression for all people, regardless of gender, still holds true today. Gender inequality is pervasive and persistent, and this is especially evident in science, medicine, and global health. Women are underrepresented in leadership positions, undervalued, and experience discrimination and gender-based violence in these fields. Intersectional approaches have shown that other factors such as ethnicity, class, geography, disability, and sexuality interact with gender to compound these inequalities.

The Lancet's theme issue on advancing women in science, medicine, and global health showcases research, commentary, and analysis that provide new explanations and evidence for action towards gender ‘equity. The issue received over 300 submissions from more than 40 countries, highlighting the global nature of this problem. The overwhelming conclusion is that actions must be directed at transforming the systems that women work within, making approaches informed by feminist analyses essential.

Although organisations have implemented programmes to advance women's careers, these often fail to engage with broader features of systems that disproportionately privilege men. For example, gender bias disadvantages women applying for grant funding. Critical perspectives, including feminist analyses, are needed to question the underlying assumptions that produce and maintain social hierarchies. Institutional-level change is necessary for lasting and far-reaching consequences towards gender equity.

Gender equity is not only a matter of justice and rights, it is crucial for producing the best research and providing the best care to patients. The fight for gender equity is everyone's responsibility, and feminism is for everybody. Men and women, researchers, clinicians, funders, institutional leaders, and even medical journals must work towards creating a more equitable and inclusive society.